Dressing Up | 50’s Fashion

There is quite a bit I love about the fifties. Home decor and furniture always catch my eye when I watch movies or TV shows of this period, and any period really. But of course, the fashion of the time is so remarkable. I love the full skirts and the way everyone seems to look nice even when scrubbing the floor.

I’ve watched a couple of episodes of Life with Elizabeth this week which was produced in the early to mid fifties. If you have seen them you know what I mean when I say Elizabeth is hilarious. If you have not seen any, let me suffice it to say she never ceases to find ways to exasperate her husband, Alvin. This show is about little things in the life of an average couple. Though I would hardly call them truly average.

I’m going to show you some of my favorite costumes from the shows.

Here Elizabeth, or Betty White, is wearing the casual button-up blouse and skirt with a belt. Only this full skirt is exceptional. I wish I could tell you what material it is actually made of, but instead I will describe it as stiff satin. Today a skirt like this would be considered formal. Very unique for the modern, every day housewife to be wearing at home, I would think, but lovely all the same.

In this episode, Elizabeth wears a striped, short sleeved gown. Notice the three little buttons on the sleeve. Also, the striping pattern of the dress. Normally, stripes are kept in the same direction when designing the sleeve or skirt. Not so with the dress. I wish I was a more experienced sewer so that I could tell you how it was done. Either way, it is something that caught my eye.

On a more wintry note, the bodice and skirt, or jumper, of this dress seems to be made out of a material like wool while the blouse is obviously a lighter material, like cotton. What I love most is the design of the back with the ties and what looks like short fringe. Simple but unique.

It is interesting that, although for that decade, Alvin is dressed casual in a polo shirt and slacks, were he to be in the modern age, we would consider him dressed up. This is what I mean about always looking nice.

And here we are, back to warmer weather. If this isn’t my favorite dress, then it is definitely at the top of my list. Like all of her skirts, this one is full and about calf length. The neck is square and the bodice is designed with ribbons down the front. You may not be able to tell from the picture, but I believe she is barefoot. For some reason, I find that amusing.

Alvin once again wears a polo and slacks while working around the house. At this point, jeans were still for the trend setting teens. At this point, jeans had been available for quite some time, but they were still not commonplace in the average persons wardrobe, and definitely not everyday wear like today.

And that does it for a 50’s fashion highlight. Thanks for reading and don’t forget to share your thoughts with me in the comment section below!

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